Saturday, 21 May 2011

Old Wallpaper & Thrifty Sewing

Over the past couple of days Husband has been stripping the old anaglypta off the hallway and upper landing walls and today he found the first layer of wallpaper which looks like it could date from when the house was new.  Luckily for him, its been a relatively easy task as it seems that our house which was built sometime during the 1900s, hasn't been decorated much since then.

Its a shame that the wallpaper is a bit too shabby chic in places, otherwise I would have been tempted to leave it if it had been in better condition.

Remember the vintage picnic case birthday present that I brought a few weeks ago, which was missing a cup? Well, I've managed to find a matching trio on eBay, so I can now replace the cup and my friend will have a spare plate and saucer.

I haven't found any charity shop or boot sale buys to show you this week, but what I have been up to is making Monkeychild a summer dress and top from a free online Oliver + S pattern.

I used some 1970s printed cotton that I brough at a boot sale last year, for the dress on the left and found some plain bright pink cotton in my fabric stash. The only new haberdashery I had to buy was a couple of metres of lilac ric-rac and two strawberry buttons.

 I made the top out of two vintage 'Dorma' pillowcases that were jumble sale finds. It reminds me of the dresses that Mum used to make for me in the '70s and is the nearest to vintage that I can find for Monkeychild, as unfortunately Mum gave all my clothes away to friends and family when I outgrew them.


  1. Our house had retro wallapaper in most of the rooms when we bought it. Obviously hadn't been decorated in years. We kept a sample of each room for a while as we were going to try and do something "artistic" with it but then I got sick of it lying around and threw it out. Wish I hadn't now. Maybe you could find a nice bit and frame it to remind you of it.

  2. That's a good idea about framing it - thanks SG. I'll have a look tomorrow and see if any of it is salvagable

  3. That wallpaper is fantastic. Isn't it lovley. But I am blown away by your stained glass door!! Did you make it? It's just gorgeous.
    The dress and the top are so sweet! Love them. There is something wonderful about ric-rac isn't there? Gives a vintage feel right away. Always reminds me of my Granny's apron which makes me smile.

    Tickety-boo xxxx

  4. It must be great finding something like that under all the other paper.

  5. Mim - Yes it was, but I wonder if anyone signed their name and date underneath it? But Husband says its staying on as he thinks that its only the wallpaper that's holding the plaster together!

    Tickety-boo - You're right about ric-rac, I always think that it has a nice homely feel to it. I made the stained glass about six years ago, along with a Victorian style panel to go above our front door. I've still got to finish a small panel for the little window in our bathroom - but its finding the time time to fit it in (and the motivation!)

  6. The wallpaper's great - could you leave one wall of it? Or would it not really go with the colours you have planned? Cute little dresses! I have 3 girls and used to msake them dresses when they were tiny. Got a 6 month old grand-daughter now, so need to get sewing again! Abby x

  7. love that wallpaper, such a shame you cannot keep it! lizzie x

  8. I would frame it, what a lovely idea :)
    p.s. thanks for the comment on my jumper, I'm glad you like it!

  9. I was going to suggest framing a piece, too. I love finding things like that, it's like a connection to past owners. xxx

  10. Such pretty wallpaper
    We found 1930's paper in our shed it was used origanally as a weekend home maybe I should keep a few bits.

    Wish I had thought of pillowcase dresses when my daughter was small they are lovely.

    cate x

  11. The stained glass door window is absolutely gorgeous - you are so clever! And I am so jealous...that would look really great in my bathroom door!

    K xx

  12. I love love love your wallpaper and the front door window.


  13. Wow the wallpaper is amazing, you should definitley try and frame abit of it. Im also blown away that you made the stained glass pannels they are stunning!!

  14. Congrats on filling in the picnic basket. The wallpaper IS really gorgeous :-)

  15. I've tried to remove some wallpaper to frame, but its completely stuck onto the wall so there it'll have to stay - it was a good idea though.

    By the way, thanks for all your lovely comments about my stained glass door panels. I'm currently restoring a Victorian glass panel and I'll show you what I've done, once its completed and inserted into the door.

  16. Gosh I can't believe you made the stained glass - amazing! I'd love to try that - well, maybe not a whole door panel to start with...

    The wallpaper is lovely as well, and the dresses, so many pretty things in one post.

    I just drew your name in my Trashion magazine giveaway, so let me know your address and I'll get it posted to you x

  17. Hiya
    I’m just sending out a quick message to let people know their Faith Hope and Charity Swapping partners. Days of spreedsheet fiddling I tell you, if this works it’s going on my CV! I won’t have access to a PC from Tues 31st until June 6th – so any questions will have to wait til I get back I’m afraid. I’m going to put up a quick post on the rules before I go, but for now you can check out your partner’s blog and start figuring out what they might like.
    Your swap partner is Nicole Needles
    Thanks for playing along!

  18. What a lovely blog, so glad I stopped by :)

  19. Just saw your dresses they are brilliant! I have that exact same pillow case but in purple :)

    If you are interested... I just made 4 similar dresses for a charity called Dress a Girl Around the World ( who take pillowcase dresses and send them to girls in poverty all over the world! The blogger Sew Scrumptious ( collects them from people in the UK and sends them to the charity.

    If you have the time I think they would love a few dresses like the one's you made, they are amazing! Sorry if you already know about this I just wanted to spread the word :)

    Take care,
    Kirby x


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